You were using the inflatable above water, then the accident happened. Now it’s all torn up and deflated. Inflatables provide endless hours of fun for kids and adults alike. Still, with all their bouncing around, it’s common for them to get punctured, in which case they need to be repaired before use.
This article is going to show you how to repair an inflatable. If you ever find yourself in a situation like this, do not panic and follow the steps below. Try to think positive and act quickly because the longer you wait to fix it, the harder it will be.
Avoid Air Leaks
If you’re faced with an inflatable that has popped a small hole, you can usually repair it with a patch kit or with some materials from around your home. However, if the damage is larger than a few inches or if the damage is in an area where the item must bend and flex, it’s better to replace the inflatable than to repair it.
Add air to your inflatable and submerge about half of it in water if you can’t find the hole. Look for air bubbles coming out of the hole. You may need to work slowly in order to spot it.
Dry off the inflatable and mark its position so that you don’t lose sight of where your hole is. This is especially important for larger inflatables, such as an air mattress or pool toy. The hole may be very close to another edge or seam, making it more difficult to identify once it’s dry again.
If the leak is too large for a patch kit to handle, you will need to use a piece of material that can withstand the pressure exerted by the air inside the inflatable. Cut out a square or circle of material based on the size of your inflatable and place it over your leak; this should be enough to stop any further leakage.
Before you start repairing your inflatable, make sure it is in the right place. A large inflatable is likely to be damaged by sharp objects and rough surfaces, so don’t use it on a rocky surface or anywhere with branches or sharp stones.
Inflatable slides can be damaged by abrasive surfaces, such as concrete or asphalt. If you need to repair an inflatable slide, consider moving it to a soft surface like grass or carpet.
The placement of the tear or puncture has a big impact on the difficulty of the repair. If the damage is more than a few inches away from one of the seams, repairing it will be simple and straightforward. Damage near seams will require you to disassemble the item and sew it back together again after patching over the tears. Punctures near seams will often also require you to remove some of the reinforcement fibers so that they don’t tear through your patch job.
Replace Blown Fuses
Blown fuses are another fairly common problem that can affect your inflatables. If you notice that the lights on your inflatable aren’t working, one of the first things to check is the fuse.
If a fuse has blown, it will likely be obvious. The fuse will have a black or brown spot in the middle, which is where the fuse “blew” when something overloaded it. The best way to fix this is to simply replace the blown fuse with a new one of the same size and type.
If you’re not sure what kind of fuse your inflatable uses, contact the manufacturer. When you receive the new fuses, make sure you give them plenty of time to cool before replacing them in your inflatable.
Resolve Electrical Issues
Some air mattresses or inflatable pools or hot tubs are equipped with an electric pump that makes inflating the device easy and convenient. If you are having trouble with this type of inflatable, first check to make sure the cord is plugged in properly and that the unit is getting power.
If the problem involves an electric pump, it might be necessary to obtain a new pump. Many inflatables come with a separate pump; if yours is attached, however, you will have to replace the entire product.
Whether you own a boat, a pool toy, or an air mattress, you should know how to repair it. It looks like a chore but it’s actually something that is relatively easy if you approach it the right way.
If the hole is along a seam line, use a tent-seam repair adhesive to repair the seam first; otherwise, the patch may not function properly. Once the glue has cured, apply a patch to the affected area with the vinyl repair kit adhesive.
In the event of damage to the nylon area, duct tape in the same color as the nylon can be used to patch the section in a pinch. If you want to remove the sticky adhesive afterward, it may be difficult to do so fully.
A marine supply store will have adhesive patches for various types of surfaces.
If a fan or blower sparks, produces strange noises or has damage to the electrical cord, do not use it. The device should be replaced.
Many types of tape, including packaging tape, are not waterproof and will not stick to inflatables for long.
Inflatable boats offer many benefits over traditional aluminum or plastic boats. They are able to land quickly on the shore or beach and still be lightweight for easy transportation by one person or a small group of people. However, inflatable boats also have a few important drawbacks that are generally not seen in non-inflatable boats. One of those is that they are damaged much more easily. By carefully inspecting and repairing your inflatable boat after every use, you can increase its lifespan and ensure that it is always ready to take on any challenges that may lie ahead.
Inflatables are fun and exciting, but over time things can go wrong, especially if you don’t take good care of them. Hopefully, these tips will help keep your inflatable in perfect condition.